Monday, April 16, 2007

An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Tomorrow is Tax Day. And as is typically the case this time of year, there’s a whole bunch of tax related headlines in the major papers.

Investors Business Daily’sAn Unfair Share” is a must read, as are the WSJ’s “The Fiscal Bottom Line” by Ernie Christian/Bill Frenzel and “The Taxpaying Minority” by Ari Fleischer. Then there’s “Unpaid Taxes Tough to Recover” in the Washington Post and “Cleaning Up the Alternative Tax” (among others) in the Grey Lady. And so on and so on…

Looking at all these stories, I had a thought: we could deal—once and for all—with the horrible complexities of the IRS tax system, expand the economy, generate even more revenues, if (you guessed it) we moved to a nice, simple, flat tax system—somewhere around 20 percent for the single tax rate. Blow out all the deductions, all the credits, and bid fond farewell to the labyrinth of complicated rules that no one (including the IRS) understands.

Trust me, good things will happen.

I know, I know, there’s nothing perfect in life. But a nice Steve Forbes/Art Laffer flat tax system would be pretty darn close. It would sure make a great benchmark to measure and grade all the assorted half-baked tax proposals coming out of Washington.

A flat tax—think of it.